For 99.9% of the population of Birmingham, it would be impossible to swap the colours of claret and blue for the blue of their city rivals (or vice versa). Yet over the years, many players have represented both Aston Villa and Birmingham City. In this article, we will have a look at some of the players who played for both Aston Villa and Birmingham City.
Here’s a look back at the small number who have turned out for both clubs.
3. Charlie Athersmith [Aston Villa 1891–1901 Birmingham 1901-05]
Athersmith played a key role in Villa’s title-winning sides of 1894, 1896, 1897, 1899 and 1900. He also reached three FA Cup finals, finishing on the losing side in 1892 before gaining winners’ medals in 1895 and the Double-winning final of the 1896–97 season.
In 1901 he joined Small Heath (Birmingham City), where he made 106 appearances and scored 13 goals.
2. Harry Hampton [Aston Villa 1904-20 Birmingham 1920-22]
Better known as “Happy” Harry Hampton or as “The Wellington Whirlwind,” he played as a centre forward for Aston Villa from 1904 to 1920. To this day Hampton remains Aston Villa’s all-time leading goalscorer in the League.
Hampton served on the Somme during the First World War and suffered from the effects of mustard gas poisoning. Hampton was never the same player after the War and after scoring 242 goals in 376 games for Aston Villa, he moved to rivals Birmingham.
At Birmingham Hampton become the Second Division club’s star player. His 16 goals made him their top scorer for the 1920–21 season and helped the club to the Second Division title. He ultimately scored 31 goals out of 59 appearances in the club before transferring to Newport County in Wales.
1. Stan Lynn [Aston Villa 1950-62 Birmingham 1961-66]
Nicknamed “Stan the Wham”, he was renowned for his powerful right-footed shots which came from his “Booming Boots”.
He established himself in the Villa team in 1954, and was a regular fixture in the side until 1960. Lynn helped Villa win their seventh FA Cup in 1957, the Second Division championship in 1960, and the 1961 League Cup. Playing against Sunderland in January 1958, Lynn became the first full-back to score a hat-trick in a top-flight match.
He transferred to Villa’s arch-rivals Birmingham City in October 1961. By which time he had lost much of his pace. He went on to play nearly 150 games for the club, helping them to their first major trophy, the 1963 League Cup. He defeated former club Aston Villa in the final, and in the 1964–65 season finished as Birmingham’s joint leading scorer.